Stopping over in a city can be a real nuisance if you spend endless hours trapped in an airport before your connecting flight departs. But instead of feeling vexed, why not make the most of your layover and spend the time sightseeing?
For those of you passing through New York, here is what you can do in the Big Apple in 24 hours!
New York in a day
New York has three airports: The John F. Kennedy Airport (JFK) in Queens for international flights, the Newark Airport (EWR) in New Jersey likewise for international flights and La Guardia (LGA) in Queens for domestic flights. The fastest way to get from the airport to the city center is by boarding the Super Shuttle (cost: $40 return journey). Not only will this save you time and stress, but you will also be able to see New Jersey and Queens in passing.
10:00 h. until 11:00 h.: Grand Central Station
The Super Shuttle takes you to Grand Central Station, which is also the starting point of our tour. This is the main train station in Manhattan, and is in a way one of the city’s main arteries, with more than a million people passing through here every day. Built in 1913, the station now has 67 tracks and 44 platforms! Here you can also find the famous Oyster Bar, which is known for serving the best fish in New York.
11:00 h. until 12:00 h. : Times Square and Broadway
Three blocks away you can find the legendary Broadway and Times Square – all the musicals, the countless restaurants and shops will leave you speechless! And here’s a special tip for musical lovers: avoid purchasing discount tickets in the middle of Times Square; instead, go directly to the box offices and check what offers they have. With a bit of luck, you might just come by some cheap tickets!
From Times Square to the pier at the corner of 12th Avenue and 42nd Street: Statue of Liberty, here we come!
12:00 h. until 14:00 h. : Statue of Liberty
From the pier, you can board the Circle Line ferry, which takes you right up to the Statue of Liberty. This is an absolute must see if you’re in New York! The 150 foot tall Statue of Liberty weighs 225 tons and was built in 1886 based on the design and specifications supplied by Frederic-Auguste Bartholdi and Gustave Eiffel. Since Hurricane Sandy, both Ellie Island and the Statue of Liberty are closed until further notice; however, the ferry will take you just close enough so that you can snap that perfect photograph!
14:00 h. until 15:00 h. : Lunch Break
If you´re ready to grab some lunch, you can hail a taxi and head over to Macy´s (151 West 34th Street), which is one of the biggest malls in New York. Here you will find just about anything to eat, from your typical American fast food to the classic New York pizza. With Ben & Jerry’s not too far from Macy´s, you’d better leave some room for dessert!
15:00 h. until 17:00 h. : Shopping at Macy’s
If you´re searching for gifts, Macy’s is one of the best places to go! The mall not only employs over 3,000 people, it’s also 10 storeys high. Clothes, jewellry, cosmetics, household goods, souvenirs…there’s something for everyone!
Incidentally, Macy´s is also the official sponsor of the annual Thanksgiving Day Parade, where more than 250,000 people participate.
17:00 h. until 19:00 h. : The Empire State Building
Since you are already in Manhattan, visiting the Empire State Building is a must; after all, it’s only two blocks away from Macy’s. This landmark is popular not only because of its incredible architecture but also because of the view; from the Observation Deck on the 86th Floor you can see all of New York, and if you’re prepared to pay $26, you can even skip the queue!
19:00h. until 20:00 h. : Ground Zero and the Financial District
Take a taxi and head over to the Financial District; even with a lot of traffic, the trip will not take longer than 15 minutes. Here you can walk past the Ground Zero Memorial Pavilion built in tribute to 9/11 victims. In the Financial District you can also visit the famous Wall Street, home to the world’s largest stock exchange. Right next door, you will find the Federal Hall, where the Bill of Rights was approved, and finally, in Bowling Green Park, you can snap a shot of the well-known Charging Bull, recognized as a symbol of financial optimism.
20:00 h. until 21:00 h. : The Brooklyn Bridge
Apart from Manhattan, there are four other districts, also referred to as “boroughs”: The Bronx, Brooklyn, Queens and Staten Island. While Manhattan might be the heart of the city, Brooklyn is likewise an extremely fashionable district! If you walk across Brooklyn Bridge, you get catch a glimpse of the breathtaking New York skyline.
21:00 h. until 23:00 h. : Baci & Abbracci
A Michelin tip for Williamsburg, Brooklyn, is to try out the food at Baci & Abracci (204 Grand Street); this is a restaurant that offers a wide variety of typical Italian cuisine at affordable prices. Baci & Abbracci has received several awards and was mentioned in numerous magazines such as the New York Times, the New York Magazine, and the Times. Because of its popularity, we recommend you book a table in advance.
23:00 h. until 01:00 h. : Williamsburg / Brooklyn
Why Brooklyn? In order to have a well-rounded New York experience, and because Brooklyn is completely different from the city center, visiting this neighborhood is essential (particularly Williamsburg is known for its creativity and the artists who live there).
At the end of the day, we recommend you try out the Maracujabar or the GQ magazine (279 Grand Street) which has received the prize for the Best Bar in Brooklyn. From here you can take the Super Shuttle straight back to the airport.
The stopover in New York was well used and all the hot spots were covered in only 24 hours! Of course New York is not a city to be covered in a day, it has much more to offer. So if you’re thinking about returning there, there are plenty of regular and affordable flights to New York!
Were you ever in New York City? What did you like best, what are your tips? We are looking forward to your comments …
And if you wish to win 2 tickets to New York City, play Travel Rush!